Welcoming October With Poetry, Praise, Music, and Art

Below – Walden Pond in October

Welcoming October with Praise: Thomas Wolfe


“Then summer fades and passes, and October comes. Will smell smoke then, and feel an unsuspected sharpness, a thrill of nervous, swift elation, a sense of sadness and departure.”

Below – David Snider: “Indian Summer”

Welcoming October with Art – Frank Carmichael: “October Gold”
Welcoming October with Poetry: Robert Frost


O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow.
Make the day seem to us less brief.
Hearts not averse to being beguiled,
Beguile us in the way you know.
Release one leaf at break of day;
At noon release another leaf;
One from our trees, one far away.
Retard the sun with gentle mist;
Enchant the land with amethyst.
Slow, slow!
For the grapes’ sake, if they were all,
Whose leaves already are burnt with frost,
Whose clustered fruit must else be lost—
For the grapes’ sake along the wall.

Welcoming October with Art – Lena Karpinsky: “October Landscape”


Welcoming October with Praise: Nathaniel Hawthorne


“There is no season when such pleasant and sunny spots may be lighted on, and produce so pleasant an effect on 
the feelings, as now in October.”

Welcoming October with Poetry: W. S. Merwin
“The Love of October”

A child looking at ruins grows younger
but cold
and wants to wake to a new name
I have been younger in October
than in all the months of spring
… walnut and may leaves the color
of shoulders at the end of summer
a month that has been to the mountain
and become light there
the long grass lies pointing uphill
even in death for a reason
that none of us knows
and the wren laughs in the early shade now
come again shining glance in your good time
naked air late morning
my love is for lightness
of touch foot feather
the day is yet one more yellow leaf
and without turning I kiss the light
by an old well on the last of the month
gathering wild rose hips
in the sun.

Welcoming October with Art – Frank Wilson: “Early October”

Welcoming October with Poetry: Dylan Thomas

“Especially When the October Wind”

Especially when the October wind
With frosty fingers punishes my hair,
Caught by the crabbing sun I walk on fire
And cast a shadow crab upon the land,
By the sea’s side, hearing the noise of birds,
Hearing the raven cough in winter sticks,
My busy heart who shudders as she talks
Sheds the syllabic blood and drains her words.

Shut, too, in a tower of words, I mark
On the horizon walking like the trees
The wordy shapes of women, and the rows
Of the star-gestured children in the park.
Some let me make you of the vowelled beeches,
Some of the oaken voices, from the roots
Of many a thorny shire tell you notes,
Some let me make you of the water’s speeches.

Behind a pot of ferns the wagging clock
Tells me the hour’s word, the neural meaning
Flies on the shafted disk, declaims the morning
And tells the windy weather in the cock.
Some let me make you of the meadow’s signs;
The signal grass that tells me all I know
Breaks with the wormy winter through the eye.
Some let me tell you of the raven’s sins.

Especially when the October wind
(Some let me make you of autumnal spells,
The spider-tongued, and the loud hill of Wales)
With fists of turnips punishes the land,
Some let me make you of the heartless words.
The heart is drained that, spelling in the scurry
Of chemic blood, warned of the coming fury.
By the sea’s side hear the dark-vowelled birds.

Below – Katherine Chandler: “Autumn Trees in Wind”

Welcoming October with Art – Theodore Robinson: “A Normandy Garden in October 1895”

Welcoming October with Praise: William Cullen Bryant
“The sweet calm sunshine of October, now
Warms the low spot; upon its grassy mold
The purple oak-leaf falls; the birchen bough
drops its bright spoil like arrow-heads of gold.”

Fallen Leaves 1
Welcoming October with Art – Nancy Poucher: “October Dune View”

Welcoming October with Music – Eric Whitacre: “October”

Welcoming October with Praise: A. E. Robinson
“The stillness of October gold
Went out like beauty from a face.”

Below – “Autumn Hillside,” by Frank Carmichael
Welcoming October with Poetry: William Stafford

“Tragic Song”

“All still when summer is over
stand shocks in the field,
nothing left to whisper,
not even good-bye, to the wind.
After summer was over
we knew winter would come:
we knew silence would wait,
tall, patient calm.”

Below – Tunis Ponsen: “Corn Shocks in Field”

Welcoming October with Art – Lorraine C. Manley: “Vermont Glorious – Autumnal Joy”

Welcoming October with Poetry: Donald Justice


Summer, goodbye.
The days grow shorter.
Cranes walk the fairway now
In careless order.

They step so gradually
Toward the distant green
They might be brushstrokes
Animating a screen.

Mist canopies
The water hazard.
Nearby, the little flag lifts,
Brave but frazzled.

Under sad clouds
Two white-capped golfers
Stand looking off, dreamy and strange,
Like young girls in Balthus.”

Below – Balthus: “Drawing Room”
Welcoming October with Praise: Nova Bair

“October’s poplars are flaming torches
lighting the way to winter.”


Welcoming October with Art – Leonid Afremov: “October Park”Afremov

Welcoming October with Poetry: Ted Hughes
“October Dawn”

October is marigold, and yet
A glass half full of wine left out

To the dark heaven all night, by dawn
Has dreamed a premonition

Of ice across its eye as if
The ice-age had begun its heave.

The lawn overtrodden and strewn
From the night before, and the whistling green

Shrubbery are doomed. Ice
Has got its spearhead into place.

First a skin, delicately here
Restraining a ripple from the air;

Soon plate and rivet on pond and brook;
Then tons of chain and massive lock

To hold rivers. Then, sound by sight
Will Mammoth and Sabre-tooth celebrate

Reunion while a fist of cold
Squeezes the fire at the core of the world,

Squeezes the fire at the core of the heart,
And now it is about to start.”

Welcoming October with Art – Robert Genn Dies: “October Song”

Welcoming October with Praise: Otsuyu Nakagawa:

“Autumn is marching on: even the scarecrows are wearing dead leaves.”

Welcoming October with Art – Jan Yates: “October”

Welcoming October with Music – U2: “October”

Welcoming October with Art – J. E. H. MacDonald: “October Shower Gleam”

Welcoming October with Praise: Thomas Wolfe

“All things on earth point home in old October; sailors to sea, travellers to walls and fences, hunters to field and hollow and the long voice of the hounds, the lover to the love he has forsaken.”

Below – Takeyce Walter: “Heading Home”

Welcoming October with Art – Vincent Van Gogh: “Mulberry Tree, October 1889”
aVan Gogh

Welcoming October with Praise: Henry David Thoreau

“To appreciate the wild and sharp flavors of these October fruits, it is necessary that you be breathing the sharp October or November air. What is sour in the house a bracing walk makes sweet. Some of these apples might be labeled, “To be eaten in the wind.” It takes a savage or wild taste to appreciate a wild fruit. . . The era of the Wild Apple will soon be past. It is a fruit which will probably become extinct in New England. I fear that he who walks over these fields a century hence will not know the pleasure of knocking off wild apples. Ah, poor soul, there are many pleasures which you will not know!. . .the end of it all will be that we shall be compelled to look for our apples in a barrel.”

Lovely October – Welcome

Below – Jack Skinner: “October Morn at Walden Pond”

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